The following is a review and excerpt of The Complete Illustrated Directory of Salmon & Steelhead Flies, written by Chris Mann (Frank Amato Publications, October 2008, 8.5 x 11 Inches, 448 Pages, Index, All Color- originally published by Melin Unwin Books, 2008) which is available at fine fly shops and booksellers everywhere.
Editor’s Note: Two pages have been excerpted from the actual book and can be viewed on pages two and three following the review.
Chris Mann has been studying Salmon Flies and their history for more than 30 years. The last two and a half of which were spent researching, identifying, and illustrating the 1,800 flies covered in his newest book, “The Complete Illustrated Directory of Salmon & Steelhead Flies.”
Mann has included the most important and relevant examples of each type of pattern- dry, hairwing, featherwing, hackle fly, spey, dee, shrimp, skater, marabou, tube, etc. In compiling these patterns, Mann has consulted not only every book published on Salmon & Steelhead flies since 1850, he has collected patterns from magazines and web sites as well.
The book itself, is broken into two parts: Salmon flies, and Steelhead flies. Due to the sheer number of flies in the book, the author has provided the reader with three indexes to help find the pattern you want, quickly and easily. An index of fly dressers, an index of fly types, and an index of all flies in alphabetical order.
All 1800 fly patterns are shown alongside their respective materials list. Mann also gives a brief introduction to each fly, noting it’s originator when known and the reputation the fly has achieved. I must note that the illustrations are breathtakingly realistic. In fact, I’m still having a hard time wrapping my mind around how such stunning detail was accomplished without photographing the actual flies (the photos you see here look more illustrated than the photos in the book).
This is the most prolific directory of Salmon and Steelhead flies ever published. From intimate full dressed featherwing patterns, to bombers, to speys, to simple hairwings; this book has you covered for a lifetime of inspiration at the tying bench.